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  • Writer's pictureLove Ballymena

New publication launched to help parents of children with disabilities

Maxine Gibson, Professional Lead CYPSP, James Martin and Valerie Maxwell Children's Services Planning Professional Advisor CYPSP.

Maxine Gibson, Professional Lead CYPSP, James Martin and Valerie Maxwell Children's Services Planning Professional Advisor CYPSP.

The Children and Young People’s Strategic Partnership (CYPSP), in association with parents of children with disabilities, has launched a new publication titled ‘A guide to help you on your Journey through Disability/Additional needs.’

This publication provides information, support and services for those with disabilities from birth through to adulthood. The event took place recently at the Long Gallery in Stormont and was officially launched by actor James Martin, star of award-winning BAFTA and Oscar film ‘An Irish Goodbye.’

In association with Barnardo’s PosAbility Group, a supporting booklet titled ‘All about Me’ has been produced by CYPSP.

This is a template that will hold information on the person with additional needs/disability, providing key information on their personal details. For example, diet and allergies; medical information; likes and dislikes; therapy and personal care, equipment used and any further information relevant, which the child/young person can take with them when attending e.g. a youth club, school, health appointment, afterschool activity, when with childminders and other family members who help care for them.

Aidan Dawson, Chief Executive, Public Health Agency and Chair of CYPSP said:

“I am delighted to endorse this resource. Co-production with parents, children, families and the strengthening of multi-agency early intervention is fundamental to the development and implementation of CYPSP Strategic Planning.

“This resource co-produced by parents for parents is an excellent example of partnership working. It is our hope that, the provision of information and advice contained in this resource, will benefit parents starting on their own journey through disability, as well as those navigating structures and systems at key points in their children’s lives.”

Ciara McKillop, Deputy Director of Social Services in SPPG, Department of Health said:

“This is an important and timely resource co-produced with CYPSP. The guidance and signposting for parents of children with disability begins to address a number of objectives set out in both the Regional Autism Strategy and the forthcoming Regional Disability Framework and will be of enormous benefit to parents, children and young people.”

CYPSP worked with parents from across Northern Ireland, community, voluntary and other statutory agencies to identify key information for the publication is based on the guidance provided by parents through their lived experience.

The guide can be accessed at:


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